Sarah Knuckey Wins 2017 Presidential Award for Outstanding Teaching

President Lee C. Bollinger ’71 will present the award during the University’s 2017 Commencement ceremony on May 17.

Sarah Knuckey, Columbia Law School’s Lieff Cabraser Associate Clinical Professor of Law, has been named a recipient of one of Columbia University’s 2017 Presidential Awards for Outstanding Teaching. The prestigious award is bestowed annually upon a small number of instructors who show a commitment to excellence and innovative teaching, and who have been nominated by fellow members of the Columbia community.

Knuckey, who serves as faculty co-director of the Human Rights Institute, is a leading expert in human rights law. She also directs the Law School’s Human Rights Clinic, where she combines intensive skills-building training with work on active human rights field projects. This year alone, Knuckey has worked on projects around the world—including in the Central African Republic, Papua New Guinea, and Yemen—actively engaging students and teaching them how to advance the law and innovate human rights methodologies.

“Perhaps most Prof. Knuckey’s devotion to her students,” said Gillian Lester, Dean and the Lucy G. Moses Professor of Law. “She works tirelessly on their behalf, and inspires them to take ownership of their training in a collaborative and meaningful way.” 

Knuckey is a founding editor of Just Security, an online forum for analysis of U.S. national security law and policy. She has also served as an adviser to the U.N. special rapporteur on extrajudicial executions (2007–2016) and as chair of the Legal Working Group on the redrafting of the Minnesota Protocol. Before joining the Columbia Law School faculty, she was an adjunct professor of clinical law and director of the Initiative on Human Rights Fact-Finding and the Project on Extrajudicial Executions at New York University School of Law’s Center for Human Rights and Global Justice, and a clerk to Justice Michael Kirby of the High Court of Australia.

University President Lee C. Bollinger ’71 will present the award to Knuckey at the University’s 2017 Commencement ceremony on May 17. Past award recipients from the Law School have included Professors Olatunde Johnson (2016), Daniel C. Richman (2015), and Philip M. Genty (2014).


Posted on April 24, 2017